August 16, 2007
AOPA members are telling the House Ways and Means Committee that H.R.2881 is the best way to finance the FAA and modernize the air traffic control system. Members of that committee will be voting on House FAA funding bill when Congress returns from vacation in September.
Ways and Means is the next step in the progress of H.R.2881. That committee must approve the bipartisan recommendation from the House Transportation Committee to continue using aviation and general fund taxes—rather than user fees—to fund the FAA.
"General aviation is willing to help pay for air traffic control modernization but we are not willing to pay for a tax cut for the airlines," wrote an AOPA member in Michigan to Rep. Sander Levin (D-Mich.).
AOPA had e-mailed its members whose representatives, like Rep. Levin, sit on the Ways and Means Committee. That's part of AOPA's strategy of targeted communications to Congress at the most effective times.
"I am writing as a constituent, supporter and private pilot," said another member to Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.). "I strongly oppose the implementation of user fees and support the continued funding of the system through efficiently collected excise taxes." Speaking of the proposal to cut the airlines' taxes, he wrote, "It seems inherently wrong that multi-billion dollar corporations should lean on the individual taxpayer, especially since we as a nation of taxpayers have already given so much to fund their continued success."
To Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) a member said, "Your support of H.R.2881 will help ensure that the general aviation community in our region remains strong, and will allow continued modernization of the FAA. H.R.2881 provides for a measured increase in the aviation fuel tax without the ridiculous, cumbersome user fees proposed by the administration and some members of Congress."
As the FAA funding bills move through Congress, AOPA will be calling on other AOPA members to weigh in at the time when it will do the most good.
For more on how you can help AOPA fight user fees, click here.
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